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Ther. Ay, but that fool knows not himself.
Ajax. Therefore I beat thee.

Ther. Lo, lo, lo, lo, what modicums of wit he utters! his evasions have ears thus long. I have bobbed his brain more than he has beat my bones: I-will buy nine sparrows for a penny, and his pia mater is not worth the ninth part of a sparrow. This lord, Achilles, Ajax, who wears his wit in his belly and his guts in his head, I'll tell you what I say of him.

81

A chil. What?

Ther. I say, this Ajax

Achil. Nay, good Ajax.
Ther. Has not so much wit-
Achil. Nay, I must hold you.
Ther. As will stop the eye of Helen's needle,
for whom he comes to fight.

Achil. Peace, fool!

Ther. I would have peace and quietness, but the fool will not: he there; that he; look you there.

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SCENE II.--Troy. A Room in Priam's Palace.
Enter PRIAM, HECTOR, TROILUS, PARIS, and
HELENUS.

Pri. After so many hours, lives, speeches spent,
AJAX offers to strike him. Thus once again says Nestor from the Greeks:
'Deliver Helen, and all damage else,
As honour, loss of time, travail, expense,
Wounds, friends, and what else dear that is con-
sum'd

Achil. Your last service was sufferance, 'twas not voluntary; no man is beaten voluntary: Ajax was here the voluntary, and you as under an impress.

Ther. E'en so; a great deal of your wit too lies in your sinews, or else there be liars. Hector shall have a great catch if he knock out either of your brains: a' were as good crack a fusty nut with no kernel. 112

Achil. What! with me too, Thersites ? Ther. There's Ulysses, and old Nestor, whose wit was mouldy ere your grandsires had nails on their toes, yoke you like draught-oxen and make you plough up the wars.

Achil. There's for you, Patroclus.
Ther. I will see you hanged, like clotpoles, ere
I come any more to your tents: I will keep
where there is wit stirring and leave the faction
Exit. 131

of fools.

Patr. A good riddance.

Achil. Marry, this, sir, is proclaim'd through all our host:

Patr. No more words, Thersites; peace!

Ther. I will hold my peace when Achilles' brach bids me, shall I?

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In hot digestion of this cormorant war,
Shall be struck off.' Hector, what say you to't?
Hect. Though no man lesser fears the Greeks
than I,

As far as toucheth my particular,
Yet, dread Priam,

10

There is no lady of more softer bowels,
More spongy to suck in the sense of fear,
More ready to cry out 'Who knows what follows?'
Than Hector is. The wound of peace is surety,
Surety secure; but modest doubt is call'd
The beacon of the wise, the tent that searches
To the bottom of the worst. Let Helen go:
Since the first sword was drawn about this
question,
Every tithe soul, 'mongst many thousand dismes,
Hath been as dear as Helen; I mean, of ours:
If we have lost so many tenths of ours,
To guard a thing not ours nor worth to us,
Had it our name, the value of one ten,
What merit 's in that reason which denies
The yielding of her up?

21

Tro.

Fie, fie! my brother,
Weigh you the worth and honour of a king
So great as our dread father in a scale
Of common ounces? will you with counters sum
The past proportion of his infinite?
And buckle in a waist most fathomless
With spans and inches so diminutive

As fears and reasons? fie, for godly shame!
Hel. No marvel, though you bite so sharp at

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Achil. What, what?

reasons,

Ther. Yes, good sooth: to, Achilles! to, Ajax! to!

120

You are so empty of them. Should not our father
Bear the great sway of his affairs with reasons,

Ajax. I shall cut out your tongue.

Ther. 'Tis no matter; I shall speak as much Because your speech hath none that tells him so? as thou afterwards. Tro. You are for dreams and slumbers, brother priest;

You fur your gloves with reason. Here are your

reasons:

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We do not throw in unrespective sink
Because we now are full. It was thought meet
Paris should do some vengeance on the Greeks:
Your breath of full consent bellied his sails;
The seas and winds, old wranglers, took a truce
And did him service: he touch'd the ports desir'd,
And for an old aunt whom the Greeks held
captive,

He brought a Grecian queen, whose youth and freshness

Wrinkles Apollo's, and makes stale the morning. Why keep we her? the Grecians keep our aunt: Is she worth keeping? why, she is a pearl, Whose price hath launch'd above a thousand ships,

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90

And turn'd crown'd kings to merchants.
If you'll avouch 'twas wisdom Paris went,
As you must needs, for you all cried 'Go, go';
If you'll confess he brought home noble prize,
As you must needs, for you all clapp'd your hands
And cried Inestimable!' why do you now
The issue of your proper wisdoms rate,
And do a deed that Fortune never did,
Beggar the estimation which you priz'd
Richer than sea and land? O! theft most base,
That we have stol'n what we do fear to keep;
But thieves unworthy of a thing so stol'n,
That in their country did them that disgrace
We fear to warrant in our native place.
Cas. Within. Cry, Trojans, cry!
Pri.

What noise? what shriek? Tro. 'Tis our mad sister, I do know her voice.

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And I will fill them with prophetic tears.
Hect. Peace, sister, peace!

Cas. Virgins and boys, mid-age and wrinkled eld,

Soft infancy, that nothing canst but cry,
Add to my clamours! let us pay betimes
A moiety of that mass of moan to come.
Cry, Trojans, cry! practise your eyes with tears!
Troy must not be, nor goodly Ilion stand;
Our firebrand brother, Paris, burns us all.
Cry, Trojans, cry! a Helen and a woe!
Cry, cry! Troy burns, or else let Helen go.

119

Exit.

Hect. Now, youthful Troilus, do not these high strains

Of divination in our sister work

Some touches of remorse? or is your blood
So madly hot that no discourse of reason,
Nor fear of bad success in a bad cause,
Can qualify the same?

Tro.
Why, brother Hector,
We may not think the justness of each act
Such and no other than event doth form it, 120
Nor once deject the courage of our minds,
Because Cassandra's mad: her brain-sick rap-
tures

Cannot distaste the goodness of a quarrel
Which hath our several honours all engag'd
To make it gracious. For my private part,
I am no more touch'd than all Priam's sons;
And Jove forbid there should be done amongst us
Such things as might offend the weakest spleen
To fight for and maintain.

131

Par. Else might the world convince of levity As well my undertakings as your counsels; But I attest the gods, your full consent Gave wings to my propension and cut off All fears attending on so dire a project: For what, alas! can these my single arms? What propugnation is in one man's valour, To stand the push and enmity of those This quarrel would excite? Yet, I protest, Were I alone to pass the difficulties, And had as ample power as I have will, Paris should ne'er retract what he hath done, Nor faint in the pursuit.

Pri. Paris, you speak Like one besotted on your sweet delights: You have the honey still, but these the gall; So to be valiant is no praise at all.

140

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160

Where Helen is the subject: then, I say,
Well may we fight for her whom, we know well,
The world's large spaces cannot parallel.
Hect. Paris and Troilus, you have both said
well;

And on the cause and question now in hand
Have gloz'd, but superficially; not much
Unlike young men, whom Aristotle thought
Unfit to hear moral philosophy.
The reasons you allege do more conduce
To the hot passion of distemper'd blood
Than to make up a free determination
"Twixt right and wrong; for pleasure and revenge
Have ears more deaf than adders to the voice
Of any true decision. Nature craves
All dues be render'd to their owners: now,
What nearer debt in all humanity
Than wife is to the husband? If this law
Of nature be corrupted through affection,
And that great minds, of partial indulgence
To their benumbed wills, resist the same,
There is a law in each well-order'd nation
To curb those raging appetites that are
Most disobedient and refractory.
If Helen then be wife to Sparta's king,
As it is known she is, these moral laws

be not taken till these two undermine it, the walls will stand till they fall of themselves. O! thou great thunder-darter of Olympus; forget that thou art Jove the king of gods, and, Mercury, lose all the serpentine craft of thy caduceus, if ye take not that little, little, less than little wit from them that they have; which shortarmed ignorance itself knows is so abundant scarce, it will not in circumvention deliver a fly from a spider, without drawing their massy irons and cutting the web. After this, the vengeance on the whole camp! or rather, the Neapolitan | bone-ache! for that, methinks, is the curse dependant on those that war for a placket. I have said my prayers, and, devil Envy, say Amen. What ho! my Lord Achilles !

170

Enter PATROCLUS.

Patr. Who's there? Thersites! Good Thersites, come in and rail.

180

Ther. If I could have remembered a gilt counterfeit, thou would'st not have slipped out of my contemplation: but it is no matter; thyself upon thyself! The common curse of mankind, folly and ignorance, be thine in great revenue! heaven bless thee from a tutor, and discipline come not near thee! Let thy blood be thy direction till thy death! then if she that lays thee out says thou art a fair corpse, I'll be sworn and sworn upon't she never shrouded any but lazars. Amen. Where's Achilles?

Patr. What! art thou devout? wast thou in prayer?

Ther. Ay; the heavens hear me!
Enter ACHILLES.

Achil. Who's there?

Patr. Thersites, my lord.

Achil. Where, where? Art thou come? Why, my cheese, my digestion, why hast thou not served thyself in to my table so many meals ? Come, what's Agamemnon?

Ther. Thy commander, Achilles. Then tell me, Patroclus, what's Achilles?

Patr. Thy lord, Thersites.

pray thee, what's thyself?

Of nature and of nation speak aloud
To have her back return'd: thus to persist
In doing wrong extenuates not wrong,
But makes it much more heavy. Hector's opinion
Is this, in way of truth; yet, ne'ertheless,
My spritely brethren, I propend to you
In resolution to keep Helen still;
For 'tis a cause that hath no mean dependance
Upon our joint and several dignities.

Tro. Why, there you touch'd the life of our
design:

200

Were it not glory that we more affected
Than the performance of our heaving spleens,
I would not wish a drop of Trojan blood
Spent more in her defence. But, worthy Hector,
She is a theme of honour and renown,
A spur to valiant and magnanimous deeds,
Whose present courage may beat down our foes,
And fame in time to come canonize us;
For, I presume, brave Hector would not lose
So rich advantage of a promis'd glory
As smiles upon the forehead of this action
For the wide world's revenue.

190

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40

Then tell me, I

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Achil. Patroclus, I'll speak with nobody. Come in with me, Thersites. Exit. Ther. Here is such patchery, such juggling, and such knavery! all the argument is a cuckold and a whore; a good quarrel to draw emulous factions and bleed to death upon. Now, the dry serpigo on the subject! and war and lechery confound all! Exit. 82

Enter AGAMEMNON, ULYSSES, NESTOR,
DIOMEDES, and AJAX.

Agam. Where is Achilles?

Patr. Within his tent; but ill dispos'd, my lord.
Agam. Let it be known to him that we are here.
He shent our messengers; and we lay by
Our appertainments, visiting of him:

Let him be told so; lest perchance he think
We dare not move the question of our place,
Or know not what we are.

Patr.

I shall say so to him. Exit. 90 Ulyss. We saw him at the opening of his tent: He is not sick.

Ajax. Yes, lion-sick, sick of proud heart: you may call it melancholy if you will favour the man; but, by my head, 'tis pride: but why, why? let him show us a cause. A word, my lord. Takes AGAMEMNON aside. Nest. What moves Ajax thus to bay at him? Ulyss. Achilles hath inveigled his fool from him.

Nest. Who, Thersites ? Ulyss. He.

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Ulyss. The elephant hath joints, but none for courtesy: his legs are legs for necessity, not for flexure.

Patr. Achilles bids me say, he is much sorry, If any thing more than your sport and pleasure Did move your greatness and this noble state To call upon him; he hopes it is no other But for your health and your digestion sake, An after-dinner's breath.

Agam.
Hear you, Patroclus; 120
We are too well acquainted with these answers:
But his evasion, wing'd thus swift with scorn,
Cannot outfly our apprehensions.

Much attribute he hath, and much the reason
Why we ascribe it to him; yet all his virtues,
Not virtuously on his own part beheld,
Do in our eyes begin to lose their gloss,
Yea, like fair fruit in an unwholesome dish,
Are like to rot untasted. Go and tell him,
We come to speak with him; and you shall not
sin

If you do say we think him over-proud

130

And under-honest, in self-assumption greater Than in the note of judgment; and worthier

than himself

Here tend the savage strangeness he puts on,

141

Disguise the holy strength of their command,
And underwrite in an observing kind
His humorous predominance; yea, watch
His pettish lunes, his ebbs, his flows, as if
The passage and whole carriage of this action
Rode on his tide. Go tell him this, and add,
That if he overhold his price so much,
We'll none of him; but let him, like an engine
Not portable, lie under this report :
'Bring action hither, this cannot go to war';
A stirring dwarf we do allowance give
Before a sleeping giant: tell him so.
Pair. I shall; and bring his answer presently.
Exit.
Agam. In second voice we 'll not be satisfied;
We come to speak with him. Ulysses, enter you.
Exit ULYSSES.

150

Ajax. What is he more than another? Agam. No more than what he thinks he is. Ajax. Is he so much? Do you not think he thinks himself a better man than I am ? Agam. No question.

Ajax. Will you subscribe his thought, and say he is?

Agam. No, noble Ajax; you are as strong, as valiant, as wise, no less noble, much more gentle, and altogether more tractable.

159

Ajax. Why should a man be proud? How doth pride grow? I know not what pride is.

Agam. Your mind is the clearer, Ajax, and your virtues the fairer. He that is proud eats up himself: pride is his own glass, his own trumpet, his own chronicle; and whatever praises itself but in the deed, devours the deed in the praise.

Ajax. I do hate a proud man, as I hate the engendering of toads.

Nest. Aside. Yet he loves himself: is't not strange?

Ulyss.

Re-enter ULYSSES.

171

Ulyss. Achilles will not to the field to-morrow. Agam. What's his excuse? He doth rely on none, But carries on the stream of his dispose Without observance or respect of any, In will peculiar and in self-admission. Agam. Why will he not upon our fair request Untent his person and share the air with us? Ulyss. Things small as nothing, for request's sake only,

He makes important: possess'd he is with greatness,

180

And speaks not to himself but with a pride
That quarrels at self-breath: imagin'd worth
Holds in his blood such swoln and hot discourse,
That 'twixt his mental and his active parts
Kingdom'd Achilles in commotion rages
And batters 'gainst itself: what should I say?
He is so plaguy proud that the death-tokens of it
Cry No recovery.'

Agam.
Let Ajax go to him.
Dear lord, go you and greet him in his tent :
'Tis said he holds you well, and will be led
At your request a little from himself.

190

Ulyss. O Agamemnon! let it not be so. We'll consecrate the steps that Ajax makes When they go from Achilles: shall the proud lord That bastes his arrogance with his own seam, And never suffers matter of the world

TROILUS AND CRESSIDA.

SCENE III.]

Enter his thoughts, save such as do revolve
And ruminate himself, shall he be worshipp'd
Of that we hold an idol more than he?
No, this thrice-worthy and right valiant lord 200
Must not so stale his palm, nobly acquir'd;
Nor, by my will, assubjugate his merit,
As amply titled as Achilles is,

By going to Achilles :

That were to enlard his fat already pride,
And add more coals to Cancer when he burns
With entertaining great Hyperion.

This lord go to him! Jupiter forbid,
And say in thunder Achilles, go to him.'
Nest. Aside. O! this is well; he rubs the vein
of him.

210

Dio. Aside. And how his silence drinks up this applause!

Ajax. If go to him, with my armed fist I'll pash him o'er the face.

615

To sinewy Ajax. I will not praise thy wisdom,
Which, like a bourn, a pale, a shore, confines
Thy spacious and dilated parts: here's Nestor,
Instructed by the antiquary times,
He must, he is, he cannot but be wise;
But pardon, father Nestor, were your days
As green as Ajax' and your brain so temper'd,
You should not have the eminence of him,
But be as Ajax.
Shall I call you father?
Ajax.
Nest. Ay, my good son.
Dio.

Be rul'd by him, Lord Ajax.
Ulyss. There is no tarrying here; the hart
Achilles

Agam. O, no! you shall not go.

Ajax. An a' be proud with me, I'll pheeze his

Keeps thicket. Please it our great general
To call together all his state of war;
Fresh kings are come to Troy: to-morrow
We must with all our main of power stand

fast:

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And here's a lord,-
-come knights from east to

west,

pride.

Let me go to him.

And cull their flower, Ajax shall cope the best. Agam. Go we to council. Let Achilles sleep: Ulyss. Not for the worth that hangs upon our Light boats sail swift, though greater hulks draw quarrel.

deep.

Exeunt.

Ajax. A paltry, insolent fellow !
Nest. Aside. How he describes himself!

220

Ajax. Can he not be sociable?
Ulyss. A side. The raven chides blackness.
Ajax. I'll let his humours blood.

Agam. Aside. He will be the physician that should be the patient.

Ajax. An all men were o' my mind,-
Ulyss. Aside. Wit would be out of fashion.
Ajax. A' should not bear it so, a' should eat
swords first: shall pride carry it?

230

Nest. Aside. An 'twould, you'd carry half. Ulyss. Aside. A' would have ten shares. Ajax. I will knead him; I'll make him supple. Nest. Aside. He's not yet through warm: force him with praises: pour in, pour in; his ambition is dry.

Here is a man-but 'tis before his face ;

I will be silent.

Ulyss. To AGAMEMNON. My lord, you feed
too much on this dislike.

ACT III.

SCENE I.-Troy. PRIAM'S Palace.
Enter PANDARUS and a Servant.

Pan. Friend! you! pray you, a word: do not you follow the young Lord Paris?

Nest. Our noble general, do not do so.
Dio. Youmust prepare to fight without Achilles.
Ulyss. Why, 'tis this naming of him does him
harm.

260

Serv. Ay, sir, when he goes before me
Pan. You depend upon him? I mean.
Serv. Sir, I do depend upon the Lord.
Pan. You depend upon a noble gentleman;
I must needs praise him.

Serv. The Lord be praised!

Pan. You know me, do you not?
Serv. Faith, sir, superficially.

10

Pan. Friend, know me better. I am the Lord Pandarus.

240

Nest.

Wherefore should you so?
He is not emulous, as Achilles is.
Ulyss. Know the whole world, he is as valiant.
Ajax. A whoreson dog, that shall palter thus
with us!

Would he were a Trojan !

Nest. What a vice were it in Ajax now,-
Ulyss. If he were proud,-
Or covetous of praise,—
Dio.
Ulyss. Ay, or surly borne,-
Or strange, or self-affected!
Dio.
Ulyss. Thank the heavens, lord, thou art of
sweet composure;

Praise him that got thee. shethat gave thee suck:
Fam'd be thy tutor, and thy parts of nature 250
Thrice-fam'd, beyond all erudition :
But he that disciplin'd thine arms to fight,
Let Mars divide eternity in twain,
And give him half: and, for thy vigour,
Bull-bearing Milo his addition yield

Serv. I hope I shall know your honour better.
Pan. I do desire it.

Serv. You are in the state of grace.

Pan. Grace! not so, friend; honour and lordMusic within. ship are my titles.

What music is this?

Serv. I do but partly know, sir: it is music in parts.

20

Pan. Know you the musicians?
Serv. Wholly, sir.

Pan. Who play they to?

Serv. To the hearers, sir.

Pan. At whose pleasure, friend?
Serv. At mine, sir, and theirs that love music.
Pan. Command, I mean, friend.
Serv. Who shall I command, sir?

Pan. Friend, we understand not one another whose request do these men play? I am too courtly, and thou art too cunning. At

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Serv. That's to 't, indeed, sir. Marry, sir, at person; with him the mortal Venus, the heartthe request of Paris my lord, who's there in blood of beauty, love's invisible soul.

Pan. Who, my cousin Cressida ?

Serv. No, sir, Helen: could you not find out that by her attributes ?

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